Iranian Vegetarian Food Guide – What to Eat and Where?

Is it reasonable to travel to Iran as a vegan or vegetarian? Can vegetarians survive in Iran? Absolutely! Visiting Iran as a vegetarian will limit your menu but it’s of course possible by considering a few guides!

There are lots of Iranian vegetarian cuisine and meatless food, but unfortunately, most of them are missed at the restaurant menu.

Still, you have our guide to travel in Iran and keep your vegetarian diet.

Vegetarian meals on Menu! What dishes can I order at a restaurant as a vegetarian?

Vegetarian Food that you can find at traditional restaurants:

  • Kashke Bademjan: Fried eggplant with onion and yogurt
  • Ash Reshteh: Rice noodles, beans, herbs (sometimes mixed with meat, please ask before the order)
  • Seasonal Salad:
  • Shrimp and Rice
  • Fried Shrimps
  • Fish Kebab with Rice
  • Fried Fish with Rice
  • Herbal rice and Fish

Vegetarian Food at Iran Fast Foods:

  • Vegetable Pizza: Fast foods are creative in choosing what kind of vegetable! And there is no special recipe for this.
  • Garlic bread: It’s either a kind of Pizza dough with garlic and cheese or fried bread with garlic sauce!
  • Fried Mushrooms / French fries! We know they are not an official meal, but they are tasty for sure!

 

Iran’s street food for Vegetarians:

  • Potato Samboose: Potato and herbs wrapped in the fried bread
  • Falafel: chickpeas, herbs, garlic, spices served with bread, pickles, tomato

Where do Vegetarians can eat in Iran? Are there any Vegan/ Veg. Friendly Restaurants in Iran?

Vegetarian-Friendly Restaurants in Tehran:

  1. Zamin Vegan Restaurant (+982188373924)

Serves Vegan Fast-food, western cuisine, dessert, and beverages

  1. Ananda Vegetarian Restaurant (+982122556767)

Serves Vegetarian Fast-food and veggie western cuisine

  1. Iranian Artist Forum Veggie Restaurant (+982188310462)

Serves Vegetarian Fast-food

  1. Noon Slowfood (+982166767502)

Serves Vegetarian food

Vegetarian-Friendly Restaurants in Isfahan:

  1. Zima Vegetarian Restaurant (+983132666254)

Serves Vegetarian Fast-food

Bandar Abbas Vegetarian/ Vegan Restaurant:

  1. Kaj Veganism restaurant (+989179809610)

They offer Persian cuisine in a vegan style!

  1. Kinowa Vegan Restaurant (+989371337242)

A vegan restaurant nearby Haghani port.

Other Veggie restaurants or with vegan/vegetarian options:

  1. Mehre Mitra Vegetarian Restaurants (+989123478303)

Location: Lavasan, Tehran Province

They normally use Mushrooms or Soya Instead of meat with Persian cuisine recipes

  1. Qavam Cafe Restaurant (+987132359271)

Location: Shiraz, Fars province

They have vegetarian Persian cuisine in the menu

  1. Dragon Chinese Restaurant (+987132286074)

Location: Shiraz, Fars Province

They have vegetarian cuisine in the menu

*Some of these veggie restaurants are local and small, so please call before showing up to make sure about their working hours

Persian Homemade food for Vegetarians:

There are lots of Persian foods which are certainly the ones you would enjoy to have and they are meatless! You can have them maybe in cozy local restaurants/ family-run restaurant, by a Persian family or you can easily make them at home! We name them here for your information and we will send you their recipes if you like to.

  • Adas Polo ba Keshmesh via Gerdu: Rice with lentils, raisins, and walnut!
  • Dal Adas: A spicy dish of lentils and shallots.
  • Estanbuli Polo/Loobia polo (without meat): rice and green beans
  • Albalu polo (Without meatballs): Brewed rice with nuts, saffron, boiled sour cherry
  • Morasa polo (without chicken/meatballs): Brewed rice with nuts, saffron, jam, cooked carrot
  • Eshkeneh: A mixture of herbs, water, eggs
  • Kuku Sabzi: The mixture of vegetables and eggs
  • KuKu Sibzamini: The mixture of potato and eggs
  • Kate Gojeh: brewed rice with tomato and potato
  • Samboose: Vegetable Pizza
  • Lubia Garm: boiled Beans with mushrooms
  • Dopiazeh: Mixture fried potato and onion
  • Yatimcheh: Mixture of fried tomato, garlic, and zucchini

Veganism in Iran!

The new generation in Iran is more or less familiar with vegetarian diet and there are vegetarian restaurants or veggie cuisine options on some menus! However, the concept of vegan is mostly common in Tehran, the capital! To survive in Iran as a true vegan you may need to take it easy sometime and maybe switch to a vegetarian diet especially in small towns.

Please check out the mentioned vegan restaurants or ask our agent to know about vegan restaurants in your particular travel destination.

Iran Ski Holiday

Iran is one of the best and the most popular skiing destinations in the Middle East. Since Iran is endowed with many high and mountainous areas with long-enduring cold weather, snowy season, and powdery snow, its ski resorts are welcomed by both local and foreign skiers. Moreover, the entrance fees and rental expenses are so affordable in all resorts.

There are two mountain ranges with different climates in Iran. The highest one is called Alborz. This mountain range, located near Tehran, stretched from the northwest to northeast of Persia, has got many popular skiing resorts such as international Dizin ski resort (the most popular and the biggest), Shemshak, and Tochal which are the most accessible and have got the best equipment for skiers.  The other mountain range is called Zagros, located at northwest and west of the country, covers 20 percent of Iran.

The most famous ski resorts of this zone are Pooladkaf (in the south near Shiraz) and Chelgerd (near Shahrekord).

Here is a glance at the most important Iran ski resorts.

Iran Dizin Ski Resort

The international and best ski resort in Iran is Dizin, which is located at the north of Tehran in the Alborz Mountain Range. It is in the list of the 40 highest ski resorts in the world. Its base is higher than the peak of many Alpine sites. The lifts get you to the altitude of 3700 meters above the sea level. Due to its high-quality snow, Dizin is welcomed and accepted by snowboarders. It should be taken into consideration that Dizin has run for any skier from beginner to professional, but it is more suitable for the more experienced ones. Here are some pieces of information about Iran Dizin Ski Resort.  There are also facilities for grass skiing during the non-snowy seasons.

Dizin Hotels and Cottages

Dizin International Ski Resort offers affordable and convenient accommodation consisting of hotels, cottages, private apartments and villas near the resort which yearly host thousands of people.

The most famous ones are the Dizin Hotel and Gajareh Hotel.

Gachsar Hotel is another hotel near the ski resort.

Dizin Skiing Equipment

Do not bring your ski facilities; you can rent what you need. Our ski school uses internationally popular and modern methods to make your ski learning more pleasant. These are the facilities you can get there: ski wear, ski and snowboard, mono board, and accessories. Kids ski teachers are also available. Tele-cabins, ski lifts, tele- skis and Hammer tele-ski are the resort equipment.

 

 Food and Drink

In Dizin you can find two main restaurants; the first one is Chalet Resturant at the 3,000 meters above sea level and the second one is Chaman Restaurant located at the top of Chaman chair lift.  You can find many other restaurants and snack bars in the zone, such as SnackBar Restaurant, Dizin Ghole, etc.

Transportation

You can take the Chaloos Road to reach Dizin Ski Resort, and based on your group members and your car; sometimes it takes 3.5 hours in the winter.

Shemshak Ski Resort

After Dizin, Shemshak is the second largest ski zone in Iran. It is at the altitude of about 2500m to 3000m above the sea level. Shemshak is suitable for more advanced skiers.

 

Shemshak Hotels

Shemshak skiers and snowboarders have got two options for lodging. Shemshak Resort Hotel and Barin Hotel both located in Shemshak area, the first one has standard quality but situated in the heart of white-coated peaks. The second one is more luxury with modern architecture and located approximately 1 kilometer from Shemshak Ski Resort.

Shemshak Skiing Equipment

There are two main slopes with chair lifts. The piste also has lighting facilities for skiing during the night. The slopes are quite steep, and many of the runs are mogul runs.  There are also ski, snowboard, and sleigh for renting.

Food and Drinks

There are different restaurants in Shemshak and Darbandsar zone such as Paparazzi restaurant, Dejavu cafe, and Restaurant, Café Muse, etc. There are also coffee shops where you can buy snacks and drinks.

 

Transportation

The ski resort is about 65 kilometers from Tehran. To get to there, you should go toward north, take Lashgarak Rd and pass Fasham to get to Shemshak.

Tochal Ski Resort

Tochal in the nearest ski resort to Tehran and can be reached via a 20-kilometer journey from the capital. It has one of the longest cable cars in the globe. It is the fifth-highest resort in the world at an altitude of about 4000m, from where you can see a glorious view of Damavand, the highest peak of Iran.

Tochal Hotels

As Tochal is near the capital, you have many options for accommodation inside Tehran, but if you love to stay your night in the silence of the snow-covered mountains, we suggest Tochal hotel at the altitude of about 3,500 meters above the sea level. The hotel serves the skiers and snowboarders for about 7 to 8 snowy months.

Tochal Skiing Equipment

Besides the ski lifts, chairlifts, ski piste, and all available facilities related to skiing, Tochal is a sports complex containing Archer Club, ziplining, one of the best hiking pathways, paintball club, Bungee jumping and ….

Food and Drink

Since the resort is almost inside Tehran, there are several restaurants and cafes in the area and on your way to the top where you can rest, have food, and drink hot coffees.

Transportation

Tochal is about 20 kilometers from Tehran center. To get there, you should take Velenjak avenue and drive toward the north.

Pooladkaf Ski Resort

Pooladkaf located in 90 km from Shiraz at the altitude of about 3200 meters from the sea level is major ski resort of the South of Iran and the second international resort after Dizin. All facilities of the resort (except the piste) is open in all seasons. It is interesting to know that sunshine is bright and strong even in January.

There is nomad camps and local houses where you can meet Indigenous people, be familiar with there customs, and listen to folklore music.

Pooladkaf Hotels

There is a 4-star hotel in the mountain for ski lovers and also a hotel apartment in the mountain skirt.

You can also spend overnight in the local houses.

Food and Drink

There are some restaurants in the mountain skirt and near the piste such as Pooladkaf Restaurant and Gholleh restaurant. Also, there is a café at the top station of the gondola lift.

Pooladkaf Facilities

In the complex, you can find surface lifts, Tele skis, snowmobiles, and a 2100-meter length gondola lift. You can also rent skiing equipment. Besides the skiing facilities, you have got the opportunity to experience cycling, horse riding, and pedalo boat riding in the mountainous area of Zagros massif.

Transportation

After about 2-hour drive from Shiraz toward the northwest through a mountainous road you get to Pooladkaf ski resort.

Chelgerd Ski Resort

Chelgerd village is the home of Bakhtiari tribe community. The resort is located about 200 km from Isfahan and about 85 kilometers from Shahrekord in Chahar Mahale Bakhtiari province at the heart of Zagros massif. You can find summits with different altitudes in the region, some of them higher than 4000 meters. There are large slopes for professionals and small slopes for the beginners. The average slope of the piste is 20 percent and it is 800-meter-long. Chelgerd with its unique nature is also a popular destination for sightseeing including the virgin area of Koohrang, springs, natural glaciers, caves, wetlands, etc.  

Chelgerd Facilities

In Chelgerd and Koohrang area, there are some hotels such as Koohrang hotel and Keyno Hotel, and also villas, ecolodges, and restaurants where you can test local foods. There are also three lifters and skiing equipment for renting.

Transportation

From Shahrekord drive west, after about 40 kilometers you reach to the Baba Heydar village. From there drive to the north, and after 50-kilometer driving in the mountainous road, you arrive in Chelegerd ski resort.

Iran Visa with No Trace in Passport  9/23/2018

MFA (Iranian Ministry of Foreign Affairs) has announced that since September 23, 2018, Iran E-visa issuing plan (without attaching visa sticker to the passport) is started in Iranian embassies and consulates all over the world and Iran international airports as well. This plan was accomplished in Doha, Muscat, Tehran International Airport (IKA), Shiraz International Airport (SYZ) and Isfahan International Airport (ISF).

 

 

Issuing Iran E-visa without sticker terms:

Visa should be single entry and the type must be Business, tourist, pilgrimage, family or medical.
Visa sticker is printed on a piece of A4-sized paper. Exit and entry stamps are also put in this paper.
The nationals of America, England, Canada, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Jordan, Colombia, Bangladesh and Somali are exempt from this new regulation and the visa sticker should be put in their passport.

 

Apply your iran visa 

 

 

Is It Safe to Travel to Iran in 2020?

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Due to the worldwide spread of coronavirus, the past couple of weeks have been concerning for international travelers everywhere.

At friendlyiran, we’re taking serious steps toward Green Tourism and we feel the social responsibility to fight against coronavirus. Therefore, to guarantee our client’s health and safety and prevent coronavirus spread, we have decided to suspend all of our tours to Iran until further notice.

Know More About Iran Travel Advice in March 2020, Here! 

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Is Iran a safe travel destination?

Iranian people have been always a true sample of friendliness and hospitality especially when it comes to foreigners. They hardly let a passenger be left alone, without say greetings or even just a hello. In fact most Iranians will not let tourist pass without making sure that they have place to stay and food to eat.

Make friendship with Iranians in 10 minutes stay friends forever! Iranians are one of the most if not the world’s most hospitable people and would love to make friends, as long as it’s both side desire.

“Anyone who comes to this house, give him food and do not ask about his faith. Because, as he merits a life next to the exalted God, no doubt he deserves a meal on my table”

Abu al-Hassan Kharqani “A great Iranian Sufi”

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When you give credit to propaganda and media thousand questions comes to your mind, keeping you wonder; “Is it really safe traveling in Iran?! Who should I believe latest travelers comments or state warnings?”

In fact Iran is among low risk travel destination based on International SOS travel risk map in 2019. According to this map, only 8 countries are labeled as insignificant travel risk destination. Meanwhile Iran has got the same safety status as most of European countries; like United Kingdom, Germany, and France.

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5 Facts about Iran Safety and Legal Security

  • Iranian citizens are not allowed to carry any kinds of weapons or buy or sell them legally.
  • None of the Iranian cities are listed between top 50 most dangerous cities in the world (not in 2018 or before that)
  • For more than fifty years, there have been no outbreak of any diseases or epidemics that threaten the life of people. There are no such diseases as Ebola or anything the same, either.
  • There have been no possibility of any terrorist attack in nearly 15-20 years.
  • You rarely find any specific cases in the media about rape, murder or attacks happening to travelers or tourists.
  • There are some governmental laws for collaboration of ministries and governmental organizations for extra cautions and protections of travelers and tourists.

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